Thursday, July 31, 2014


It's no shock to many who've known me for most of my life that I am the way that I am, and honestly, I have mom to thank for that.  After losing my father when I was three, my Psychologist mother knew there would be various stages in the grieving process for me and my two older brothers.  Maybe we'd hold it in until our teenage years and rebel by stealing the family car, smoke behind the gym at lunch, run away, get a girl pregnant or sail off into the deep blue sea never to be heard from again.  Well, lucky for her (and all of us) we didn't do any of that.  Instead, at the ripe age of three, I took to coloring the walls of my bedroom with crayons.  If you came over to our house, chances are I'd drag you into my bedroom and trace you on my wall!  While friends and family might have been slightly appalled by the level of freedom (of expression) my mother gave us, she explained it in simple Psych 101 terms: "I'm letting him express himself creatively through art!"  Somehow she was able to contain that freedom of expression to only one wall in my bedroom.  Points for MOM!  I use those same tools and lessons today, especially in my design work.  Last month I helped a four year-old adjust to his new home by including him in my design process (he painted a few canvases for me with colors he chose and helped me place them in his room, thus allowing him to feel included in the entire move process).  Last week I helped a slightly older kid adjust to his new, very sleek bedroom by leaving one very large portion of wall above his bed untouched.  I taped off a 4'x8' section, gave him paints of various colors and said GO FOR IT.  Whatever you want to do, do it, and make it your own.  What the smart ass kid did was actually kinda cool now that I look at it…he painted it white and trimmed it in a silver to look like the tape I'd placed around as a border.  After spending months purchasing and designing custom pieces for his room, by putting him to work and including his fingerprints, the space is now uniquely his.